In a culture of customer centricity, everyone understands why the focus on the customer is a priority and how important it is to the organization’s long-term success. Considering the customer is part of everyone’s thinking and decision-making process. As a result, there are three key things truly customer-centric organizations do that results in individuals making a difference to the customer experience.
- Individuals must genuinely care about both the expressed and unexpressed needs of the customer.
- Individuals take personal responsibility for the customer experience.
- Individuals do what is right for the customer and appropriate for the company.
In this video, Phil Geldart, author of "Customer Centricity: A Present and Future Priority," shares his thoughts on this topic.
Phil Geldart: I need to understand: why is it important to care about the customer? What does the customer do to the business? What does the customer bring to the business? What happens if we don't care about the customer? Where will they go?
An organization committed to customer centricity has to do more than just be committed, you actually have to equip every employee with a set of behaviors to allow them to think about the customer all the time, and then do something about it.
What are those behaviors? Well, if I gave you a list of 50 things, people aren't going to remember them, let alone do them all – or have a list of 10 things, it's still a bit of a problem.
So, I tried to bring it down to three distinct things, but each one has a purpose. The first says, if I don't care about the customer, then all the training in the world isn't going to matter. I need to understand: why is it important to care about the customer? What does the customer do to the business? What does the customer bring to the business? What happens if we don't care about the customer? Where will they go? It's a mindset, it's an appreciation for the importance of the customer. And hopefully, something coming from within me saying, "Okay, I know you're important, but I do care. I really want you to deal with our organization". And that's kind of a mindset. That's a heart thing, and it's caring. You've got to build that into folks and give them a chance to develop an appreciation for the customer.
Now that I have that appreciation, what do I do? Well, the first thing before I figure out what to do, is I have to own the problem. I have to realize, I care about the customer and something needs to be done. But I'm the one that can do something about it. Now maybe I physically do something about it. Or maybe I make others aware that something needs to be done. But either way, I take the initiative to ensure that something happens. I own the problem.
And then the third thing is okay, I own it, now I should do something about it. I physically do something so the customer benefits. This sort of three-part model really helps translate the desire for customer centricity into practical reality. Goodness, experience, value, for the customer. Care. Own. Do.